For fans of Harry Styles and The Little Mermaid, Tuesday was a roller coaster of emotions, as the singer and actor was rumored to have signed on to play Prince Eric in Disney’s upcoming live action reboot of its 1989 animated classic and then, just as quickly, those rumors were shut down.
First, Disney fan blog the DisInsider reported that Styles had been cast, which was not unexpected, after The Hollywood Reporter said last month that Styles was in “early negotiations” to play Ariel’s love interest. Both AMC Theatres and Regal Cinemas tweeted the news, and Twitter was pumped.
Yahoo Entertainment reached out to Disney and Styles for confirmation.
Soon the theater chains deleted their tweets and a new report from The Wrap contradicted the casting news: Styles had turned down an offer to join the cast, people with knowledge of the situation said. Variety later confirmed.
And now both AMC and Regal have deleted these tweets!!!! What the hell... https://t.co/kxDQ9KiIG6
— Esther Zuckerman (@ezwrites) August 13, 2019
DisInsider later apologized for getting the story wrong.
Turns out our source on Harry Styles was WRONG, we apologize for misinforming you, and we will do better double confirm scoops and stories we receive.
We have been fortunate enough to get a lot of scoops correct. Sadly, this was not the case.
Once again we apologize
— The DisInsider (@TheDisInsider) August 13, 2019
By that time, social media had been thrown for a loop.
Harries quickly trying to delete all their tweets fangirling over Harry as Prince Eric 🤡🤡 pic.twitter.com/reN2ysjGwx
— Katie (@7Rings4Harry) August 13, 2019
we went from “Harry Styles is confirmed to be playing Prince Eric in Disney’s The Little Mermaid!” to “Harry Styles is not confirmed to be playing prince eric... Yet.” to “Harry styles has turned down the role of Prince Eric.” pic.twitter.com/p5aKfM7lVg
— ⁎˳✧༚ (@harrysflower) August 13, 2019
the media after sending everyone into a panic saying Harry was going to be prince Eric only to delete the tweets and have to say he isn’t pic.twitter.com/wzixLQGm6h
— tal (@bohemianIou) August 13, 2019
Styles fans were devastated.
I was so happy that harry was going to be prince Eric I’m so sad I really got fooled 🤡😔💔
— Andrea (@kimmistylesx) August 13, 2019
So is Harry Styled playing prince Eric or not bro. Don’t play with my feelings
— leslie 🌻✨ (@lesliegurrola19) August 13, 2019
Sooooo Harry styles is actually NOT playing Prince Eric.... pic.twitter.com/EWq1ABJxV8
— Bintou (@bintou_fall) August 13, 2019
harry styles really turned down the role for prince eric... i- 😔😔😔😔😔😔😔
— h.b. (@HannahBalagot) August 13, 2019
The 25-year-old former One Direction star appeared in 2017’s Christopher Nolan war drama Dunkirk, so the news seemed plausible. While The Little Mermaid would have been a more lighthearted role, it wouldn’t have been easy, since it would most likely require him to sing and act.
The filmmakers revealed last month that Halle Bailey, an actress on TV’s Grown-ish and a performer with the duo Chloe x Halle, would portray Ariel.
Other cast members include Melissa McCarthy, who’s playing the villainous Ursula, Awkwafina as Scuttle and Jacob Tremblay as Flounder, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
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